Wednesday, March 01, 2006

Where have the Vitamins Gone?

Whenever concern is voiced regarding our ability to produce enough food for the expected 9.5 billion people by 2040 we are always reminded of the Greening Revolution and the subsequent increase in agricultural yields.

A new study at the University of California Davis has shown what many environmentalists have always suspected. Even if we were to go along and pretend that the new techniques and the resultant crops are safe and economical they are qualitatively inferior to their older counterparts by an astounding 38%. The study has investigated the content of vitamins and proteins in the new larger yielding crops of fruits and vegetables with the contents of fruits and vegetables prior to the modification.All nutritional contents were lower , in the new crops, by more than a third. Scientists explained these results by saying that faster growing crops do not allow the plants enough time to manufacture and store nutrients, nutritional value and the required time to grow are indirectly related.

To make things worse, the preliminary results on 18 kinds of new and improved wheat suggest also a substantial decrease in the nutritional contents of the new crops. Maybe we can eventually grow crops to expand the yields by a factor of say fifty but the new plants will have no nutritional value whatsoever!!! When will we ever learn.

10 comments:

Haddy said...

Well I can not wait to chow down on some good ol' GMO's. Nothing like a well balanced meal. It looks like capitalism is going to save the day by making us even weaker of a species by making us dependent on the pharmaceutical industry. Why not just skip the whole inconvenient time consuming process of eating, and just have a nice efficient, sleek and shiny new miracle pill to replace meals. After all, eating just takes time from work now doesn't it.

ghassan karam said...

Haddy,
If I was to bet I would say that somewhere a firm is already working on your suggestion.

Valerie said...

I definitely agree with the both of you. Nothing artificial can replace the organic chains of nutrients and vitamins in plants, thus again invalidating all the claims of GMO companies.
And weird as it is, a pill substitue for food may just be in the near future (as seen in "the 5th Element" movie).
But then again, things would have to be pretty bad for that to happen, because a HUGE part of the American culture is surrounded by food.
We go out to eat, love to indulge, eat when we're bored, with friends, on special occasions, during meetings, when we're depressed, on dates, at home, at work, and everywhere in between. Look at any travel magazine for example: it's basically two things - a tour guide and a dining guide. So although eating may "take time from work" as Haddy sarcastically said, it's a base for social life in the US. Maybe if we didn't revolve our day around getting food or eating it, things would be a lot better.

Haddy said...

yes...but there is the difference between a healthy well balanced meal, and glutony

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Vitamins said...

Allthough I have to agree to the last post, I do not think you can put it that simple. There are always two sides to a book and I, for one, always try to look at things from a broader perspective. Greetings! P.S. Eat your vitamins!

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